Definition of magenta in English:



  • 1[mass noun] A light mauvish-crimson which is one of the primary subtractive colours, complementary to green.

    ‘bright pink double flowers each lined in dark magenta’
    [as modifier] ‘a short magenta dress’
    • ‘When the bureau tested bills with more intense colors, like purple and magenta, focus groups thought they looked fake.’
    • ‘On the screen, tall thin models with dark tans paraded back and forth in shimmering orange and magenta gowns.’
    • ‘Full of silky, pillows, a futon sat against one of the pale, pastel purple walls while her low-lying bed covered with sheets tie dyed in green, gray, purple, magenta.’
    • ‘Painted on top of each are geometric shapes that range from dark green to magenta to off-white.’
    • ‘Fake furs are presented in an especially trendy style - in fashionable colours from magenta to lime green and cyan blue.’
    • ‘As an aside, a mixture of cyan, magenta and yellow should produce black, but in reality a touch of black is needed to get it.’
    • ‘These A5 sized cards are based on the eight main colours of the spectrum - magenta, violet, blue, turquoise, green, yellow, orange, red.’
    • ‘I got four pastel pencils in magenta, imperial purple, dark cornflower and a brighter blue and made some light sketches in these improbable colours.’
    • ‘The magenta, blue, and green lights fell across her gray eyes and brown hair in beautiful patterns, illuminating them with color.’
    • ‘Two dragons, a bold magenta and a cooler green, pursued each others’ tails in wheels around my head.’
    • ‘The women wore long magenta dresses embroidered with huge black circles; the men were in black suits, except for one - a clownish individual.’
    • ‘She flipped her poncho onto her shoulders and let the aqua and magenta wool envelope her.’
    • ‘A sleeveless, short robe of magenta with a short turned up collar of a slightly darker shade added a little more color and variety.’
    • ‘The negatives are then exposed successively on film coated with sensitized pigmented gelatin - Cyan, magenta, yellow and black.’
    • ‘It has a long flowering period, producing magenta pink blooms with dark centres right through the summer.’
    • ‘Most photoprinters are actually inkjet printers that offer six-colour printing by adding light cyan and light magenta to the usual cyan, magenta, yellow and black.’
    • ‘The dancers are in flat slippers, the costumes are in bold autumnal colours of magenta, orange and dark yellow, and the girls have their hair loose.’
    • ‘The colours are either rich jewel tones or warm earthy hues, and include: magenta, purple, red, gold, emerald, olive, espresso, chocolate and charcoal grey.’
    • ‘The positions of magenta, sepia, lanceolate, and short were also adjusted to reflect this change in the map.’
    • ‘Fabrics and colours are luxuriously decadent: red felt, magenta georgette, misty grey mohair, powdery blue sheepskin and sequinned fleece knits.’
    reddish-purple, purplish-red, crimson, mauvish-crimson, carmine red, fuchsia, fuchsin
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1The dye fuchsin.
      • ‘By 1860, the recipe for magenta was accidentally altered by Charles Girard and Georges de Laire to produce aniline blue.’
      • ‘Occasionally the dyes, such as magenta, mauve, the bright blues, or Metternich green, initiated the fashion.’
      • ‘The red-violet dye magenta was first produced commercially in France in 1858.’
      • ‘The synthetic dye magenta was the next major commercial success.’
      • ‘In one of the first legal cases involving infringement of a dye patent, Read Holliday was vindicated in 1865 of a charge that he violated the patent of a competitor to produce magenta by the arsenic acid process.’


Mid 19th century: named after Magenta in northern Italy, site of a battle (1859) fought shortly before the red dye was discovered.